A few weeks ago I wrote about Shaolin Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit’s magical menstrual taboo as described on his site at Shaolin.org:
Many people regularly consulted my Sifu for spiritual advice. His Taoist magic, which he always used for good, was very, very powerful — more powerful than what many people would believe. One day there was a Taoist celebration. My siheng, Ah Seng, who was learning Taoism from my Sifu, gave a demonstration of Taoist magic. He chopped his own leg with a sharp, heavy sword.
Normally the sword would bounce away as my Siheng would be protected by Taoist gods. But that day the gods did not come to protect him, and he did not know. This was because the previous night Ah Seng went out with his girlfriend who happened to be in the midst of her menstruation. Menstruated blood is considered “dirty” by Taoist gods, and Ah Seng was contaminated.
So the heavy sword cut right to his bone. Blood splashed out all over the place. Even if he were taken to hospital, he would bleed to death before arrival.
My Sifu quickly but calmly got a piece of paper nearby. With his sword finger (formed by holding the thumb, fourth and small fingers together, leaving the index and middle fingers straight) he drew some magical formula on the paper while he canted some Taoist mantra. He placed the paper on Ah Seng’s huge wound. The bleeding stopped immediately. The next day there was not even a scar on Ah Seng’s leg! In the range of my Sifu’s Taoist powers, this was only middle-level.
At the onset of menstruation the odour drives away the male. On account of its impurity it weakens the virility and will cause sickness in the male. People preparing drug extracts and pharmaceuticals, children developing smallpox, priests under ordination, Taoists during their exercises, all keep away from a menstruating woman. In Funan Kuo they have magic to prevent knives from cutting people, but if menstrual blood be smeared on the blade it will kill a person. There is very definite evidence to show that these secretions destroy the vitality of a person. Li Shi-Chen considers the Taoist prescriptions and uses of this drug too disreputable to be noticed.Saline, bland, nonpoisonous.Used as an antidote to arrow poison, and for female weakness.
Ashed, given for sexual weakness in the male after a bout of fever. The ash is given to women for jaundice. For cholera. The blood is used as a base for applying elm bark and other drugs to boils on the back. Given with indigo for convulsions in children. That from a virgin is ashed and applied to sores on the penis. It is administered with clear feces as an antidote to the copper poison used on the arrows of the barbarians. The ash is given to absorb extravasated blood from wounds. It is given as an antidote to infections from animal bites and wounds.
The physician Chang Miao reported: A servant woman fell ill. Only several days later she had sexual relations with six men, all of whom then died. When a woman falls ill she passes [her illness] to the husband, and when a man falls ill, he, too, can pass his illness to the wife. The “burnt undergarment remedy” should be administered; it cures both warmth-illness and the exchange of yin [influences].Take the part of a woman’s clothing that has covered her genitals, burn it, and use the ashes.This drug should be prepared into a powder. Take a square-inch spoonful three times daily. This will cause urine to flow and the glans to swell slightly. This indicates that a cure has been effected. When women fall ill, they can utilize the garments of a man in the same way; the drug is taken with wine or water.This is originally a prescription from [Chang] Chung-ching (Zhang Zhong Jing, a famous Chinese Medicine doctor). The same instructions are also found in the Chou-hou [pei-chi fang].
Ju Chih. Human Milk.The character Ju is composed of Fu meaning confidence in or certainty, and Hua to change or generate, implying that a child depends upon the normal mother to generate milk, hence the old pharmacists created fanciful names such as Sheng Jen Hsueh and Pai Chu Sha. Milk is said to be formed from female blood in the spleen and stomach and is limited in its distribution to the Ch’ung and Jen parts of the circulation. When nonpregnant it descends to form the menstrual fluid, during pregnancy it is retained in the body to nourish the foetus, as soon as the child is born the red fluid changes to white and ascends to form milk, this is one of the most mysterious natural phenomena in creation. Those who practise black art and sorcery use corrupt methods to make young virgins yield milk, changing the menstrual fluid into a lacteal secretion. Such deceptions are subject to the utmost rigor of the law and are discredited by decent people.The milk used in medicine is from a mother without sickness after delivery of her firstborn son. (Same as in ancient Egypt.) It must be white and thick. If it be yellow, pink, watery, stinking, or dirty like saliva it must not be used.Chi Nai is milk secreted during a second pregnancy. It is considered very poisonous to children, causing them to vomit and defecate, and to develop serious illness.The character of the milk depends on the habits and food of the mother. A quiet tempered person who eats mild foods will generate normal bland milk, but hot tempered people who take spicey foods and alcoholic drink or who are suffering from fever, will have milk that is overheating and injurious. Milk should be taken fresh, whilst it is warm, or dried milk powder can be added to other drugs. The Sung dynasty records tell of a man who recovered from chronic tuberculosis by taking women’s milk, and another man who lived to 240 years by taking the milk of the wives of his great grandchildren.Milk is said to benefit the heart action and to be a tonic to the brain, it will cure diabetes insipidus and inflammatory diseases.The milk drawn into the mouth should be mixed thoroughly with the saliva, the nose should be stopped up with paper, after holding the breath the air in the nose should be slowly drawn through the nasal passages and the milk very slowly swallowed down. Five to seven mouthfuls are enough for one dose. If taken straight down it is of no greater benefit than ordinary junket from cow’s milk.Sweet, saline, not heating, nonpoisonous.A tonic to the viscera, it makes one fat and sleek. For conjunctivitis with pain, redness, and lachrymation (trachoma) an old copper coin, is rubbed in milk in a copper container until a decided colour develops. This is then dropped into the eye daily. Or coptis root is boiled in the milk.with salted beans for beef poisoning, and cow’s liver poisoning. With bird’s excreta to cure fleshy growths in the eye.A pint of the fermented preparation has a marked rejuvenating effect on dried up old men. For tuberculosis, apoplexy, fainting fits, aphonia, amennorhoea, for anuria in the newborn given with onion, given with salt and bezoar for regurgitation in the newborn. Applied to bread to draw the pus from an abscess. Applied with t’ung oil to leg abscesses.